July 16th, 2024

As disasters mount, First Nations’ safety has never been more pressing: Woodhouse

By The Canadian Press on March 6, 2024.

Assembly of First Nations (AFN) National Chief Cindy Woodhouse Nepinak speaks during an interview in Ottawa, Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2024. First Nations leaders are gathered in Gatineau, Que. to discuss how they can better be prepared for the wildfires, floods and effects of climate change that disproportionately affect their communities.THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Patrick Doyle

GATINEAU, Que. – First Nations leaders are gathered today to discuss how they can better prepare for the wildfires, floods and effects of climate change that disproportionately affect their communities.

The Assembly of First Nations summit in Gatineau, Que., is the first such forum in seven years.

It follows a record-breaking wildfire season that scorched 100,000 square kilometres of land and saw dozens of First Nations communities evacuated.

National Chief Cindy Woodhouse Nepinak says at no time has the safety of communities amid disasters been a more pressing concern.

She says while communities are resilient, they need equitable partnerships with other levels of government to mitigate risks and ensure speedy responses to crises.

The summit, which also includes academics and federal, provincial and territorial government officials, will wrap up on Thursday.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 6, 2024.

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